Christians May be Denied Right to Practice Medicine

Hippocratic Oath

If you push a person to be consistent with his operating assumptions, it will reveal the true implications of his worldview. History is filled with such examples. Blacks were viewed as less than human and therefore slavery was an appropriate practice and condition to be in. Adolf Hitler considered Jews as vermin to be exterminated.

Let’s consider the field of medicine. Consider the article “What is the Point of Being a Doctor When Conscience Overrules Professional Duties?” written by Francesca Minerva, a  post-doctoral fellow at the University of Melbourne and Research Associate at the Uehiro Centre for Practical Ethics. It was posted on the Practical Ethics website, a publication of the University of Oxford. It’s important because the following proposal could become standard practice in the United Kingdom. Their form of socialized medicine is the model for America:

What is the point of investing public money and resources to provide a degree in medicine for people who put their moral or religious concerns before the well-being of the people they are supposed to cure? Are we sure we want to put at risk our right to be cured just because we want to safeguard doctors’ right to conscientious objection? Maybe we should stop hiring doctors who make conscientious objections in favour of the ones who are able to leave aside their moral concerns. And maybe we should discourage students to pursuit a career in medicine if they cannot put their patients before their own moral or religious beliefs.

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Abortions in European countries are now safe, but just because they are practiced in hospitals with high hygienic standards and by expert practitioners. When the percentage of conscientious objectors is too high, though, women are more keen on looking at back street abortion, exposing themselves to the danger of septicaemia and other infections which can bring to death.

In a later article Minerva argued, along with co-author Alberto Giubilini, that “[t]he moral status of an infant is equivalent to that of a fetus in the sense that both lack those properties that justify the attribution of a right to life to an individual. . . . Both a fetus and a newborn certainly are human beings and potential persons, but neither is a ‘person’ in the sense of ‘subject of a moral right to life’.”

The day may come that anyone having a moral objection to such a view will not be granted a license to practice medicine.

Minerva seems to have forgotten that the Hippocratic Oath was viewed as the moral model for the practicing physician. On the topic of abortion, it reads:

I will not give a lethal drug to anyone if I am asked, nor will I advise such a plan; and similarly I will not give a woman a pessary to cause an abortion.

A pessary is a mechanical device inserted in the vagina to induce an abortion.

She has also forgotten that the medical profession is mostly an outgrowth of religious beliefs. The Judeo-Christian worldview played a large role.

It can be said . . . that the modern concept of a hospital dates from AD 331 when Constantine , having been converted to Christianity, abolished all pagan hospitals and thus created the opportunity for a new start. Until that time disease had isolated the sufferer from the community. The Christian tradition emphasized the close relationship of the sufferer to his fellow man, upon whom rested the obligation for care. Illness thus became a matter for the Christian church.

Without the moral brake of a Christian worldview, there is no telling what so-called medical profession paid for by the State (with confiscated tax dollars) will do with “the least of these.”

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